He’s back where he belongs!
Spider-Man Homecoming is directed by Jon Watts (Cop Car), and stars Tom Holland, Zendaya, Jacob Batalon, and not to mention Iron Man himself Robert Downey Jr.
This time we see a new take on the infamous web-crawler, instead of showcasing him taking on larger than life villains, we see a more grounded, personal story of Peter Parker. Marvel Studios has done the right thing, by sending the web-head back to school, and this is definitely first and foremost a breakfast club-esque coming of age story that just so happens to have Spider-Man as its main lead.
We see Peter coming off from the battle that happened in Civil War, and suddenly now he has to endure a normal life as a school kid, while he anxiously waits for Iron Man to call him for “the next mission”, this eagerness, and naivety brings a whole new layer to Peter Parker. While Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 2 explores a Peter Parker who was burdened by his obligations as Spider-Man, Homecoming tells a story of a Peter Parker who wishes he could be Spider-Man all the time, and abandon his less exciting alter ego altogether.
Tom Holland is the definitive Spider-Man meshing in all the great elements that were once brought by Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield respectively. He’s naive, reckless, and portrays the struggle of school-kid with day-to-day problems, and not to mention he’s a local superhero at the same time, and he brings a right amount of vulnerability, and shows that amidst all the web-crawling, and crime-fighting, at the end of the day he’s just a kid.
Jacob Batalon as Ned Leeds brings so much energy to the movie, and in some capacity he reflects what we, the audience are, and it’s just nice for Peter to have a bestfriend that doesn’t try to kill him in the end. Oh wait, Hobgoblin. Laura Harrier as Liz Allan also provides a great performance as Peter’s love interest. Zendaya was fine, but most will be surprised by the very little screen time she has. Tony Revolori as Flash Thompson brings a different, yet exciting layer to the character, he’s portrayed as more of a rival to Peter, not just another 2 dimensional meathead. Marissa Tomei was enjoyable as a younger Aunt May, although she didn’t do much in the movie. Robert Downey Jr. was used sparingly as Peter Parker’s mentor, and it’s evident, that Sony was using him as a marketing tool.
There’s one character that I have not mention, and that is Adrian Toomes himself The Vulture, portrayed by the great Michael Keaton, and I’m glad to say he is the best MCU villain yet (Netflix villains aside). Keaton brings in a very intimidating performance, and the fact he was given a formidable amount of screen-time unlike other MCU villains. Right from the get-go, you get his motivations, and you sympathize with him when the battle of New York takes everything from him. Not to mention, at some point of the movie takes the character to a whole different level, and adding in even more layers to his character.
Jon Watts also brings so much energy, and liveliness to Queens, continuing the tradition of portraying New York itself as a character. You enjoy the sense of community that it has, and you feel Peter Parker fits in all of this. The highschool atmosphere was also great, full of joy, and adolescent spirit. The diversity of the cast is to be praised on its own, and it’s a nice change of pace to what we are used to see in the MCU. Of course the classic Marvel humor is also present, and fits very well, especially due to the highschool setting.
So, it’s safe to say that the Sony/Marvel deal worked wonders for them (as long as Marvel has the wheel, and Sony just sits in the corner watching), Spider-Man Homecoming is a great coming of age story of Peter Parker, featuring a wonderful cast, and has the MCU’s best villain so far, and it’s just great to say; HE’S BACK!